EDMONTON -- Alberta's health minister announced on Thursday more details about the next phase of vaccinations and that the province would receive more than 50,000 doses of the newly approved AstraZeneca shot next week.

And with that, a promise from Tyler Shandro: "We now expect to offer all Albertans aged 18 and over a first dose of vaccine by the end of June, provided that, and I should put an asterisk here, provided that the promise of vaccine shipments actually arrive as scheduled, as we were told by the federal government."


Shandro announced Alberta would receive 58,500 of the AstraZeneca vaccine and begin to roll it out to people aged 50 to 64 on and after March 10.

The AstraZeneca vaccine is 60 to 70 per cent effective against COVID-19, and 80 per cent effective in protection of severe outcomes like hospitalization, Shandro said.

Albertans in the age group will be given the choice to get this shot, or wait for the more effective Moderna and Pfizer shots in Phase 2D in early May.

"Both Dr. Hinshaw and I recommend that all healthy Albertans get immunized as soon as they are eligible no matter what vaccine option is provided," the health minister said.

Hinshaw added: "I want to stress that all the vaccines currently approved for use in Canada will reduce the risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19 including hospitalization and death. All three have passed the rigorous regulatory approval processes in place to ensure they are safe for all Canadians, and all three offers significant levels of protection from the virus. No matter your current age or overall health. I strongly recommend all Albertans are vaccinated against COVID-19 as soon as they are eligible."


More than 437,000 seniors between the ages of 65 and 74 can begin to book their appointments on March 15.

Appointment bookings will be different this time around to reduce wait times, with an age group per day. On March 15, Albertans born on 1947 can book their appointment. The next day, people born on 1948 can sign up for theirs, and so on.

Bookings can be made through participating pharmacies, the online tool and HealthLink.

First Nations, Inuit and Metis people over 50 will also receive vaccine starting March 15.

Alberta has administered 266,231 doses.


Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw announced 331 COVID-19 cases after nearly 9,500 tests and a positivity rate of 3.6 per cent.

She also reported 33 cases of the variant and nine more deaths.

There are 4,613 active cases including 245 people in hospital across Alberta.